Who We Are
John Restrepo is the Principal of RCG Economics in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he directs the firm’s economic and financial consulting activities. For eight years, John was the Director of Financial Advisory Services in Las Vegas for Coopers & Lybrand LLP. Before joining Coopers & Lybrand in 1990, he managed the Las Vegas office of Mountain West Research, a regional economics firm based in Phoenix, Arizona. Prior to Mountain West, he was the Chief Operating Officer of a 40-person regional planning and civil engineering firm based in New Orleans.
For 28 years, John has analyzed regional economic and real estate trends in a number of markets, including Nevada, Arizona, California, Texas, and the Southeast U.S. His 20 years of urban economics experience has given him a broad range of skills and technical expertise in assessing the effects of local, regional, and national economic trends on urban real estate markets. His clients include some of the most prominent private and public organizations in Nevada concerned with development and growth.
John has spoken before a variety of business groups on a wide range of topics related to real estate, gaming and economic trends in Nevada, and has been quoted extensively in the local, regional and national media on real estate and economics issues facing the Western U.S.
John has a BA in Economics from the University of Louisiana. He also holds a MA in Latin American Studies/Economics from Louisiana State University-Baton Rouge.
He was the 2008 president of the Las Vegas chapter of NAIOP, a member of SIOR, and a Steering Committee member of the Urban Land Institute chapter in Las Vegas. Additional, John was appointed by Governor Jim Gibbons to the Nevada Economic Forum for a two-year term, where he is responsible for providing forecasts of the state's general fund revenues.
Elena Shampaner-Ghiassi is Project Director with RCG Economics in Las Vegas, Nevada. She provides the day-to-day management of all RCG Economics’ real estate and economics research projects for the firm’s private and public sector clients.
Elena has developed numerous business and strategic plans, including financial projections and scenario modeling, to support regional developers in developing large scale, residential, commercial (office, retail, industrial), hotel and casino-resort projects. She has also prepared demand projections for development projects and markets using RCG Economics’ extensive demographic, economic and gaming behavior data (e.g., incidence, trip frequency, relative attractiveness of one property versus its competition, etc.).
Prior to joining RCG Economics, Elena spent several years with Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc. first as a Senior Market Planning Analyst and then as Manager of European Development. In both of these roles, she evaluated gaming markets regarding customer and competitor dynamics, quantifying opportunities for new business development and analyzing the impact of legislation and new competition in Harrah’s existing and potential markets. She also analyzed and provided necessary analytical support for international gaming markets and development opportunities.
Elena is receiving her Doctor of Philosophy degree in Hospitality Administration from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (“UNLV”). Her areas of interest include: Marketing Analytics-Gaming Industry Developments and Operational Analysis-International Business Practices. Elena also has a Master of Science, Hospitality Administration from the UNLV. Prior to receiving her MS from UNLV, Elena received her Master of Science in Multicultural Communication and Business from Tomsk State Pedagogical University, Russia.
Elena speaks three languages: English, Russian and French.
Patricia Flynn is an affiliate of RCG Economics. She specializes in advising corporate and public sector clients in the effective use of their real estate portfolios to both support the enterprise mission and maximize economic results. As a real estate and operations expert, Patricia is able to identify economic gains from both changes in real estate use as well as operational efficiencies. She often assists clients in redesigning real estate organizations, assessing both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of strategies ranging from total outsourcing to a full-service internal organization.
Patricia holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pomona College and a Master of Business Administration degree in Urban Land Economics and Finance from the Anderson Graduate School of Business Administration, UCLA.
Patricia is a member of the Urban Land Institute and Lambda Alpha, an honorary real estate economics society. She has served as a ULI national panelist for public asset management at a charette sponsored by the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Patricia was previously a partner with Coopers & Lybrand L.L.P. in the firm’s Los Angeles office.
Michael C. “Nick” Niarchos
Michael C. "Nick" Niarchos is an affiliate of RCG Economics. Nick is a graduate of Miami University of Ohio and the University of Chicago Law School. After graduation from law school Nick was engaged in the practice of general commercial and real estate law in Chicago, Illinois.
In 1981, he was recruited by Summa Corporation and The Hughes Corporation in Las Vegas, Nevada (the “Companies”). Nick was employed by the Companies from 1981 through 1998 and served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel.
Nick was a key player in the transition of the assets and businesses owned by Howard Hughes at his death from an aviation andgaming company into a multi-faceted real estate development, operating and investment company. These activities included not only the resolution of a multitude of issues related to the Estate of Howard Hughes but the disposition of the aviation and gaming properties, including Hughes Helicopters, the Desert Inn, the Frontier and other gaming properties.
Nick played a primary role in the transition of large land holdings owned by the companies into a large regional real estate development, investment and operating company. These projects include Howard Hughes Center and Playa vista in Los Angeles, The Fashion Show in Las Vegas, Hughes Center and Hughes Airport Center in Las Vegas, Nevada and Summerlin in Las Vegas, Nevada. Summerlin is a master planned community consisting of more than 25,000 acres and has consistently been not only the top selling master planned community in the country but has won numerous awards for its planning and quality of development.
Nick’s experience in the realm of real estate development runs the entire gamut from planning, entitlement, finance and transactional at the highest levels of complexity and sophistication. In addition, he acted as advisor to the Boards of Directors of the Companies and served on a three person Finance Committee overseeing operations of the Companies which committee included the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer.
In 1996, Nick supervised the merger of the Companies into the Rouse Corporation. This transaction culminated a multi-year effort to create liquidity for the heirs of Howard Hughes. In 1998 and after the final transition of the Companies into a publicly owned Rouse corporation, he left the Companies.
Since 1998, Nick has been active in many areas. He has been and continues to be actively involved in the creation and operation of the Las Vegas Monorail. Although not a full time employee, he serves as Vice President of the Las Vegas Monorail Company. His clients include the City of Las Vegas, Nevada and various real estate and business interests in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Range of Experience:
Produces quarterly surveys for office, industrial and retail markets documenting historical trends, as well as the current state of market conditions at the Las Vegas Valley and submarket levels.
Retained by the City of Las Vegas to prepare a quarterly “Fact Sheet” to be included in the City’s “Urban Renaissance” newsletter. The Fact Sheet contains a series of economic and real estate indicators.
Prepared a mixed-use development absorption-SID analysis including site and location analyses, investigation of potential and existing competition and demand.
Worked on a study involving existing and projected affordable and attainable housing needs in the region.
Analyzed the market potential for a local mixed-use infill development. Scope of work entailed subject property productivity analysis, demand-supply analysis and market capture.
Retained to develop proposals for investment banks by a manufacturing firm. Research included marine engine market analysis, financing and cost analyses.
Worked on several casino market studies as well as economic and fiscal impact analysis for some of the largest gaming companies, builders and master developers in Nevada.
Worked on absorption models and analyses for a variety of master-planned communities, many including gaming resorts for Special Improvement District financings. This work covers more than 13,000 acres. These engagements involved assessing economic, income and demographic trends, residential supply and demand market trends and the use of a multi-disciplinary team of real estate economists, GIS technicians, gaming market analysts, land planners and appraisers.
Performed market analyses for a variety of mid-rise and high-rise condo and hotel-condo projects with a focus on Nevada. The research involved studying project-specific factors such as absorption, demographics, site/location analysis, competitor assessments, pricing program recommendations, market segmentation, amenity analysis, development/amenity programming. This work was performed for both urban and suburban locations.
Our full-time professional staff is supported by the firm’s office manager, Vida Splan.
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